In her poetry collection Float, Anne Carson thinks about a lot of things that are fluid.
One of them is pronouns, a hot queer, gender enriched subject that is about naming and identity in the most populist form. Float contains two chapbooks musing over the figures of speech, one in regards to envying other’s pronouns and one ruminating on the means of individualizing them as it relates to identity. They’re all quite great.
One of the two is a funny, lovely sonnet that I wanted to share as it is fairly profound and pretty in its exploration of the contemporary subject. Called “Sonnet Of The Pronoun Event,” it bounces all around what we use them for, suggesting an understanding and untapped potential for that which we taxonomize ourselves while also cutting out pronouns to show how trendy and tricky they are, that—while necessary in an ever queering society—creates an opportunity for appropriation despite their lexical beauty.
I love it. Enjoy, whether it bemuses or amuses you.
“Sonnet Of The Pronoun Event”
1. A man and a woman looking for pronouns.
2. All the people going down to look for pronouns.
3. Mud taken up looking for pronouns.
4. Washing the pronouns in the water to remove the mud.
5. Washing themselves off after the mud has got on them.
6. Pronouns in a basket.
7. Walking from the pronoun place to go look for somewhere dry to sit down.
8. Are pronouns.
9. Are pronouns not.
10. Are pronouns not very.
11. Are pronouns not very much.
12. Are pronouns not very much like.
13. Are pronouns not very much like lilies.
14. Yes they are very much like lilies otherwise how could they constitute an Event.